Focus Area
Emergency Management/Transportation Security
Submitting On Behalf Of
AASHTO Committee on TSO
Important - Medium Priority
$250,000 - 499,000
1 - 2 years
Type of Research
Full Research Project
Date Posted
Jul 31, 2020
Not Funded

Research Description

Autonomous vehicle technology is reshaping the future of transportation, communities, and ultimately policing. Today, many new vehicles offer a degree of automation that is less than completely autonomous. Drivers relying on automation place law enforcement officers at increased risk because the semi-autonomous vehicles on the road today do not yet recognize emergency lighting, sirens, or vehicles. As a result, these vehicles do not follow the requirements of the “move-over” law. As the number of autonomous vehicles increase on the nations roadways, so too does the risk of injury and death among police officers.

Prior attempts to detect emergency vehicles has relied on acoustic detection of sirens, visual detection of emergency lights, or combinations of the two. However, digital alerts can provide the precise location of police vehicles and is a vast improvement over traditional detection techniques. The goal of this research is to increase the safety of police officers while conducting their community policing duties. The research methodology seeks to provide a proof-of-concept and full-scale demonstration of an integrated police vehicle location alerting system for autonomous vehicles. This will be accomplished by adapting digital alerting technologies to communicate the presence of police officers and their vehicles directly with autonomous vehicles. This advanced warning will provide sufficient time for the vehicle to safely follow police instructions. A full-scale demonstration will be conducted on two Level 3 autonomous vehicles executing police directives such as: slow-down, move-over, and pullover procedures.

Additional Supporting Information

Additional supporting information can be provided by Dr. Scott Parr.

Scott Parr, Ph.D. Assistant Professor Department of Civil Engineering Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University 1 Aerospace Blvd. Daytona Beach, FL 32114 Office: Leman 321 Phone: (386) 226 – 7530 Email:

Submitted By
Jianming Ma
Texas DOT


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